"There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate's loot on Treasure Island." - Walt Disney

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

The Prayer Map for Women

This is the first journal I have received in the “Prayer Map” series so I don’t know how it compares to others.

LIKES – this journal is roughly 5x8 inches making it small enough to carry with you either by hand, or in a bag. The spiral binding makes it incredibly easy to flip through. There is guided prayer prompts and daily verses offering you a chance at a relationship with the Lord.

DISLIKES – the small size limits the amount of space in which you can write your thoughts. There are only enough pages for roughly 90 days. EVERY single page spread is exactly the same with no differences other than any you add with the exception of a different verse mentioned each day. Since the title declares this to be a “creative journal”, I expected room to “create”, “draw, or doodle”, or maybe even a few coloring pages. None of that is included, nor is there room to add any of those things. The only thing you are creating is a fill in the blank prayer.

Overall, this is a decent publication for anyone new to praying, or looking for help in guided prayer. However, I do not see myself getting any more of these.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Barbour Publishing and was under no obligation to post a review.

The Pirate Bride

Can a former privateer and a determined heiress find lost treasure in 1725? A brand new series for fans of all things related to history, romance, adventure, faith, and family trees. Pasts Collide in New Orleans when a Treasure Goes Missing The last time New Orleans attorney Jean-Luc Valmont saw Maribel Cordoba, a Spanish nobleman’s daughter, she was an eleven-year-old orphan perched in the riggings of his privateering vessel proving herself as the best lookout on his crew. Until the day his infamy caught up with them all and innocent lives were lost. Unsure why he survived but vowing to make something of the chance he was given, Jean-Luc has buried his past life so deep that no living person will ever find it—until a very much alive and very grown up Maribel Cordoba arrives on his doorstep and threatens all he now holds dear. 

I was so very disappointed in this book. Don’t get me wrong – Y’Barbo is a talented author, but the description for this book is misleading and the pacing of much of the tale is all wrong.

First, the title and description are misleading as no marriage ever takes place in the book.

Second, the heroine is a preteen for more than half of the novel, and doesn’t meet the hero again until near the end when an awkward and rushed romance ensues.

Third, many of the actions of other characters take place “off stage” only to be awkwardly and unrealistically summed up by others.

Fourth, I didn’t like or relate to ANY of the characters from Maribel’s family (real, or adopted).

Fifth, while I did enjoy the first half to two-thirds of the book (I loved Maribel and Jean-Luc’s characters as well as their interactions) I was disappointed this is advertised as a romance, but the heroine isn’t even an adult until near the end when she finally reconnects with the hero.

Sixth, I found the pacing, plot, and characters for the very beginning of the book and that last third of the book completely unbelievable.

Overall, this story had so much potential, but feels like an early draft rushed to publication.
This is the second book in “The Daughters of the Mayflower” series, but can easily be read as a stand-alone tale.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Barbour Publishing and was under no obligation to post a review.

Monday, April 23, 2018

Potter and Shakespeare Fun

Last week I mentioned throwing literary parties. I shared links to a few I've had in the past, and let you know I was about to host a "Wizarding World of Harry Potter" party. Here is the link to a few pictures from that party if you are interested: My Harry Potter World Party

Also, in case you haven't heard, today is "National Talk Like Shakespeare Day". It's observed on April 23, in honor of the author's birthday. To learn more about this celebration, check out the official site at: http://www.talklikeshakespeare.org/

About six years ago, I shared my own interest in Shakespeare in an article at Southern Writer's Magazine. You can check that out here: For the Love of Shakespeare.

For other great reads, Shakespeare fans should check out:

25 Romances for Shakespeare Fans
English, Irish, and Scottish Poetry
All the World's a Stage: Great Drama

Do you enjoy themed parties? What was your favorite? Are you a Shakespeare fan? Will you be celebrating today? 

Monday, April 16, 2018

Party Like the Book...Again

About five years ago I wrote a post Party Like the Book in which I shared my love for planning literary themed parties. If you read my original post, you can find links to 10 different examples (both mine and others) of book themed parties.

My enjoyment and execution of this idea has not diminished over time. I still enjoy them, and have planned a few more. I am currently planning a "Wizarding World of Harry Potter" themed party. I include "Wizarding World of..." because I'm including touches of "Fantastic Beasts", fan fiction inspired ideas, and "Unofficial Harry Potter" ideas in this party. I'll share pics and more info later.

For now, if you'd like to see more examples of my parties:

What Makes a Rainbow - young children LOVE rainbows, and this book especially. Here are pics of some of our "colorful" fun: https://www.pinterest.com/sylvianey/my-what-makes-a-rainbow-party/

Wonderland Tea Party – My girls are both fans of Lewis Caroll’s Alice. We've actually used this one several times. Here are some pictures of our party designs: http://pinterest.com/sylvianey/my-alice-tea-party/

Dr. Seuss – This party can be adapted to a single Seuss book theme such as Cat in the Hat, Hop on Pop, Lorax, etc. Here are some pictures from the party for my girls: http://pinterest.com/sylvianey/my-dr-seuss-party/
Have you planned a Book Themed Party? Ever attended one? What theme would you love to see?

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Celebrating the 60th National Library Week

Celebrate National Library Week April 8-14, 2018  with the theme, "Libraries Lead."

The 2018 National Library Week celebration marks the 60th anniversary of the first event, sponsored in 1958.

Misty Copeland serves as 2018 National Library Week Honorary Chair. In 2015, Misty was promoted to principal dancer at the American Ballet Theatre, making her the first African American woman to ever be promoted to the position in the company’s 75-year history. She is the author of the New York Times bestselling memoir, Life in Motion and her 2014 picture book, Firebird, won the "Coretta Scott King Book Illustrator Award" in 2015. Her new book, Ballerina Body, an instant New York Times Bestseller, published in March 2017. 

To learn more about Copeland and this weeks hosted events click here.

Most writers and readers adore their local libraries, and it's often an included vacation locale. However, many don't realize the full range of services a good library offers. For great examples, check out this article at The Write Life.

Are you, or your local libraries, celebrating with any special events this year? What is your favorite aspect of libraries?

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

IWSG: Dig Deep

It’s time for another group posting of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group! founded by Alex J. Cavanaugh. Time to release our fears to the world – or offer encouragement to those who are feeling neurotic. If you’d like to join us, click on the tab above and sign up. We post the first Wednesday of every month. Your words might be the encouragement someone needs. You can also join us on twitter using the hashtag #IWSG, or on the Facebook page.

Now, IWSG hosts have changed up the format in an effort to make it more fun and interactive.Every month, they will announce a question that members can answer in their IWSG Day post. These questions may prompt you to share advice, insight, a personal experience or story. Include your answer to the question in your IWSG post or let it inspire your post if you are struggling with something to say. 

Don’t forget to visit others that day to see their answers. Want to join, or learn more? Visit our - Sign-up List.

APRIL QUESTION: When your writing life is a bit cloudy or filled with rain, what do you do to dig down and keep on writing?

MY ANSWER: I've actually written about this before. So many things can affect our writing. Here are a few things I recommend:


Tuesday, April 3, 2018

No A to Z for Me

As you can tell, I decided to pass on participating in the "A to Z Blog Challenge" this year. I just have too much on my plate. However, I did enjoy the seven years that I participated. I made a lot of new friends, and learned some amazing things.

If you're participating, I wish you the best of luck. I will be popping by for a visit as time allows.

If you'd like to learn morehttp://www.a-to-zchallenge.com/

I'll see you tomorrow for the IWSG post!

Have you participated before? Are you participating this year?